With enactment of the 2009-10 New York State budget, “New York will leapfrog New Jersey to claim the mantle of America’s worst tax code for business.”  So says Josh Barro on the Tax Foundation’s always informative Tax Policy Blog.

Writes Barro:

This plan isn’t as terrible as the Full Schneiderman, but it’s still quite bad.  Usually, New York politicians defend high taxes by saying that New York City is so wonderful, people will stay at any price.  But at a time when (former) investment bankers have become more price-sensitive and more mobile, this plan gives them a push to take their next business ventures elsewhere.

This tax increase would be less annoying if it were truly necessary to produce a balanced budget.  However, as the New York Times noted in a news analysis piece yesterday, the budget’s 8.7% spending increase “could hardly be called austere.”  Symbolizing New York leaders’ lack of spending restraint, the budget even includes $170 million for “members’ items,” the New York State version of federal earmarks.

The Empire Center has detailed those pork-barrel expenditures here.

Barro again:

If there is a silver lining here for non-curling New Yorkers, it’s that New Jersey is working on a terrible tax and budget plan of its own.  New Jersey may re-leapfrog New York and retain its honors for worst tax code in the country.  Usually, here at the Tax Foundation, we say we like tax competition between the states, but this is not really what we had in mind.

About the Author

E.J. McMahon

Edmund J. McMahon is Empire Center's founder and a senior fellow.

Read more by E.J. McMahon

You may also like

Another Hochul To-Do: Timely Financial Reporting

The state will spend a record $212 billion in the current 2022 Fiscal Year, under the budget its elected leaders adopted in April. Read More

Sales Tax Receipts Surge Statewide, Filling Local Government Coffers

Local governments across every region of the state raked in robust sales tax collections during the three months that ended on June 30th Read More

Health Research Inc. Turns Over its Payroll Records Despite Claiming To Be Exempt from FOIL

The full payroll records of more than 2,400 de facto state employees are available to the public for the first time after being released by Health Research Inc. Read More

Emergency Billions Pose Opportunity—and Risk—for NYS Schools

New York schools are to post publicly today plans for spending a huge pile of unexpected and unbudgeted cash. Read More

Remote Threat 

Remote work and a more mobile professional class will increase the speed and scope of New York's ongoing out migration. Read More

New York’s Medicaid Rolls Kept Pace with a Nationwide Surge During the Pandemic

New York's Medicaid and Child Health Plus programs added three-quarters of a million enrollees during the coronavirus pandemic, roughly matching the pace of a national surge in sign-ups. Read More

New York’s Hospital Industry Ranks Near the Bottom of Two Quality Report Cards

New York's hospitals remain near the bottom of two quality report cards. The state's hospitals received the lowest rate of any state except Nevada and DC. Read More

New York’s Medicaid and Public Health Crises Get Short Shrift in the New State Budget

In spite of an ongoing pandemic and spiraling Medicaid costs, New York's health-care system received surprisingly little attention in the new state budget. On issue after issue, law Read More


Sign up to receive updates about Empire Center research, news and events in your email.


Empire Center for Public Policy
30 South Pearl St.
Suite 1210
Albany, NY 12207

Phone: 518-434-3100

General Inquiries: Info@EmpireCenter.org

Press Inquiries: Press@EmpireCenter.org


The Empire Center is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank located in Albany, New York. Our mission is to make New York a better place to live and work by promoting public policy reforms grounded in free-market principles, personal responsibility, and the ideals of effective and accountable government.

Empire Center Logo Enjoying our work? Sign up for email alerts on our latest news and research.
Together, we can make New York a better place to live and work!